The “new benchmark” for sports sedans has finally been revealed. After weeks of teasing, Audi has revealed the new A7 and they seem quite proud of it.
At an event held at the brand’s new design center, head of design Marc Lichte, head of development Peter Mertens, and Audi CEO Ruper Stadler spoke about the latest iteration of the Sportback par excellence.
According to them, the new A7’s design is heavily based on that of the Prologue, a concept first shown in 2014. With a low, broad grille and slender new headlights, the A7 has a new face. “I’m particularly proud of the daytime running lights,” says Lichte, though his favorite bit, he admitted, was the light bar at the rear.
Like the A8, this new A7’s rear end has brake lights across the entire rear of it, though it does not have a chrome strip, like the A8. The belt line, meanwhile, has been lowered to highlight the car’s muscular wheels, said Lichte.
Peter Mertens, on the other hand, was more excited about the car’s technical features. Audi has worked on efficiency by adding electric coasting and a mild hybrid system, while performance gains were made possible by the car’s four-wheel steering system.
A new electronic chassis program, the updated air suspension, and a rear suspension effectively redesigned from scratch will also help make this the nimblest and quickest A7 to date. With up to 21-inch wheels also on offer and a sport suspension that lowers the car by 10 mm, this promises to be a blast when the road gets twisty.
Inside, owners will be able to control the MMI infotainment with either their fingers or their voice and ample space in the front and rear mean that all passengers will be in the lap of luxury.
Under the hood, the A7 Sportback will feature two V6s, both offered with a 48-volt “mild hybrid” system. The car will be launched with the 3.0-liter turbocharged V6, though. That engine makes 340 horsepower and 368 pound-feet of torque and will propel it from zero-to-60 mph in just 5.3 seconds and on to a top speed of 155 mph.
Paired to a seven-speed S tronic transmission, the A7 will return up to 34 mpg. The A7 55 TFSI quattro S tronic will be followed by more six- and four-cylinder engines, in both gas and diesel. We’ll have to wait for the reveal of the S7 and the RS7 for anything bigger.
Once you’ve reached your destination, you’ll be able to press the AI button to engage the remote garage pilot function that can park the car without you even having to be in it, helping the car fit into particular narrow parking spots. This function can be controlled from a smartphone.
As the years progress the AI system will be capable of even more features, such as the Tour assist package. That will allow the car to help owners drive as efficiently as possible.
Assembly is being handled by Audi’s Neckarsulm plant and the A7 will launch (in Germany) in late February 2018, making it the perfect Valentine’s gift, truly. You’ll have to really love your significant other, though, because prices start at 67,800 euros ($80,250 USD).